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Property Investing is a little like having a Baby!

In celebration of the birth of my new baby niece I have to share with you this thought. Okay, it is a little kooky/controversial but…

Property investing is a little like having a baby.

There, I said it and my sister-in-law who delivered in the hall outside the maternity ward is probably thinking I am a little crazy about now.

So just humour me a little.

The top 5 reasons (Jo believes) property investing is like having a baby….

1. Everyone has an opinion:

E.V.E.R.Y.O.N.E knows how you should calm your baby, or bring on labour, or what school is best or why you should introduce solids early or late…

In the same light, just attend any gathering of grown-ups and mention you are looking to invest in a house/villa/sub-division and you will have 48 different opinions, mostly fear and doom.

2. It is never the right time:

Having a baby is a big step in any relationship. There are many reasons to postpone reducing the household income by half and then adding a cost to the mix. You can postpone investing in property also for many reasons – logical or irrational. Your future self will thank you for starting – over analysis paralysis anyone?

3. It is expensive:

Property can start to bring you a financial ROI from the beginning.

You might need to wait 8 plus years before your little cherub starts to take out the bins or unstack a dishwasher.

Then there is the 300k-lifetime estimate to raise just one child.

Kids can also be very motivating – the more you have, the richer you need to be, having property helps!

4. It hurts:

No matter what exit strategy junior takes….it hurts… if not during (thanks modern medicine) then there will be some post ouch moments.

It is a pain with a reward, so is property investing, but it can be super stressful.

It can cause anguish, uncertainty and dig up a lot of unwanted self-doubt.

Be prepared – you will feel smug joy eventually!

5. You feel euphoric:

Whether you are a Mum or an Aunty or a Godmother or just like babies.

There is something about a baby that makes people smile. Holding your newborn is a huge heart melt for most new Mums regardless of all the other bits.

When you buy a property and it finally settles, you feel great! You get a tenant, you feel great, you renovate it, you feel great, it goes up in value by $280,000 in 2 years…get my point, see I am not mad!

Are you a Peter Pan?

Are you a Peter Pan? The new tribes of the property market.

July 25, 2016 from

Peter Pan
Debbie Schipp @debbieschipp

FORGET empty-nesters, newlyweds and nuclear families — a whole new set of social tribes are shaping how and where we live and what we live in. Think Social Singles, Peter Pans and the Home Work Tribe.
They’re the household groups dictating changes in everything from the housing market to business and transport.
New research by the Commonwealth Bank has identified 10 “tribes” that are emerging now, and by 2030 will be calling the shots.
For decades, Australia’s “tribes” have remained fairly consistent: flatting friends, newlyweds, nuclear families and empty-nesters.
But an evolving population, more higher-density living, increased multiculturalism and housing market dynamics are driving the formation of new groups, according to the CommBank Future Home Insights Series.
Commonwealth Bank executive general manager of home buying Dan Huggins said the emergence of the tribes would have a direct impact on how Australian property was built, renovated, bought and sold.
“We know that most of these groups have existed for some time, but the newest to emerge, and the ones that will have the biggest impact on how the home is set up in the future, will be the homework group, social singles and multigenerational clans,” he said.
“That social singles group is huge — and growing — it will be the biggest group by 2030 and the biggest part of the market.
Social singles are the fastest growing new tribe.
“For us it’s about understanding the needs of our customers and knowing how to meet those changing needs over time — it might be guarantor loans or split loans, and adapting our approach to how we service those markets to suit those customers.”

Social researcher Mark McCrindle said the new “tribes” told us a lot about who we were as Australians and were a departure from the standard way we thought about groups.
“Traditionally we think about tribe based on demographics and age,” Mr McCrindle said.
“This is a move to ‘psychographics’ — more social trends and attitudes and lifestyles. We are who we are not because of our age or family situation, but because of our attitude to life and how we view it, adjust and reinvent.”
He said people now moved through more varied life stages — it’s no longer as simple as childhood, to teenager, to adulthood.
“We have extended adolescence into the 20s thanks to the stay-at-home generation. A middle-years life stage has emerged,” he said.
“In the past people in their 60s were retirees. Now they’re ‘down-agers’ — younger than their years and reinventing themselves in their 60s and 70s.
“Politicians and businesses will need to understand and better engage with these groups and there’ll be new markets and services to meet their needs.”
Mr McCrindle said the new scribes had emerged because life markers had changed. Where the 20s was once the time for marriage and kids, the average age for giving birth is now 31.
“You have this extra decade that has created the social singles, and couples around for eight or nine years with no kids has created the DINKs,” he said.
“The retirement push back has seen the emergence of Peter Pans.”
So who are the 10 tribes?
The fastest growing tribe — 26 per cent of Australian homes will be single-person households by 2030. They want space easily set up for their work and life needs: reliable wireless technology, sliding separation doors and flexible building design. Their numbers will grow about two per cent annually, hitting three million households by 2030.
The DINKS prize entertainment, and inner city digs … when they’re home.
More couples under 45 are having children later in life or having none at all. DINKS (Double Income, No Kids) prioritise high incomes and entertainment, and feel the pull of inner city areas. DINK magnets in Sydney are Erskineville, Alexandria and Surry Hills. In Melbourne, DINKS want Kensington and Southbank. In Brisbane, they opt for Teneriffe, Fortitude Valley and Bowen Hills. Brompton is where it’s at for Adelaide, and Leederville in Perth.
Don’t feel sorry for them, smug homeowners. These people rent by choice and a third of them make up the rental market. They want the flexibility of renting where they want to live. They may prioritise lifestyle and travel over other financial commitments. This tribe includes young people, as well as professionals in higher-income brackets.
One in three workers employed will be on a freelance basis driving the need for flexible homes that can double up as the office. By 2030, with homes getting smaller, but with the home work tribe getting bigger, that will mean dual-purpose furniture: kitchen benches converting to work desks, and coffee tables becoming digital screens.
The rise in multiculturalism will see more extended families cohabiting with children, parents and grandparents all living under the one roof. Caring for family elders is still the norm in many parts of the world, and the multigenerational tribe puts family at its heart.

Like today’s nuclear families, in 2030 this tribe will still have two children on average — but everything else will be reinvented — thanks to the inclusion of everything from same-sex couples to surrogate parents. Internationally, nuclear families are turning to co-housing communities and multi-family residencies.
This group is on the rise. Born between 1954 and 1965, this generation of Baby Boomers will be aged between 65 and 76 in 2030. But forget about retiring from life. This young-at-heart tribe has no intention of slowing down and will live independently as long as possible, enabled by the latest technology.
Members of the city switcher group are choosing the regional lifestyle over city life. That’s made easier by technology and regional transport links.
In 2030, people may choose shared accommodation at a later stage in life to rent with like-minded people. Many homeowners are also becoming midlife flatmates, realising empty spare bedrooms can generate rental income, either casually (think Airbnb) or by taking in a long-term tenant.

With an influx of new developments and high-rise apartments expected in some capital cities, property accumulators of the future will need to be more sensitive to the needs of the household tribes that inhabit their properties.
With the new tribes will come new demands — and freedoms — in architecture, says Australian Institute of Architects NSW chapter president Shaun Carter.
“We won’t be necessarily bound to the social norms and structures that formed our past,” he said.
It will see new trends including adaptive architecture, under which homes will be built with reconfiguration and adaptation to changing lifestyles and budgets in mind — think flexible floor plans, sliding walls and mechanical ceilings.
Health and well-being homes won’t just protect you from the elements, they’ll actively make you feel better — assessing heart and breathing rates and mood when you walk in, and adjusting light and music to suit, as well as reminding you to be more active, helping “Peter Pans” live independently for longer.
Closed-loop homes by 2030 are forecast to operate as self-sufficient ecosystems, generating their own electricity, getting rid of waste and recycling water.

Celebrate It’s a New Year…

Portrait of a young businesswoman working with papers in office

I always totally look this hot and well ironed when doing paperwork!

It is New Year’s Eve but minus the fireworks – or perhaps fireworks of a different less spellbinding kind.

June 30 spells the end of the financial year and like every year before I spend the last week madly scrambling about finalising payments, wondering why I didn’t put my health benefits bonus to better use and lamenting my personal bookkeeping qualities.

….and now she is here, June 30th, in all her glory.

Like all NYE’s I ponder my resolutions for the year ahead…

Yes, I will put every property expense into Xero/Excel as soon as it emerges, I will keep a better system of notes for all my properties, I will do my taxes asap so they don’t become a mental burden and I will review all of my interest rates across my portfolio and hassle lenders accordingly for a review.

Does this sound like you?

If you have a property portfolio be sure to match this with a good, actually make that, great, Accountant. Look into a depreciation schedule if you haven’t already done so, regularly review your properties. When was the last time rent was increased, is it past due?

Are you getting the maximum gain from your portfolio? Are you better off exploring different options – like a property management shake-up or a shift to short-term holiday letting?

When was the last time you refinanced, ever? never? What about assessing your ability to borrow again? What financial goals are you setting yourself for FY17?

It is only June 30th but this lady needs a drink…plus it is also my first anniversary.

On July 1st last year I stepped into this position and what a glorious year it has been.

Biggest warmest squishy hugs to the wonderful team at Property Women for your amazing support and to all of you in the greater PW community for your sass, spirit and enthusiasm!

Happy New Year,


What is a Buyers’ Agent?

Buyers Agents are licensed agents who represent the buyer in a real estate purchase. Typically, this involves finding properties that satisfy clients purchasing criteria, carrying out the due diligence and assistance in acquiring the property by negotiation or at auction.

Buyers Agents are governed by legislation and codes of conduct as prescribed by the Office of Fair Trade.

You can expect the following from a Buyers Agent (or Buyers Advocate)

  • Sourcing off-market or pre-market listings
  • Reduce your investment of time
  • Understands the market very well
  • Knows how to look out for clever purchasing opportunities
  • Can provide clear feedback
  • Liaise with your solicitor, broker and sometimes architect
  • Call council on your behalf
  • Arrange strata reports and pest and building inspections
  • Save you stress and act as your wingman (or woman)
  • Negotiate the best deal for you
  • Provide valuable advice throughout the buying process

Buyers Agents work for the buyer and by law must disclose any commissions payable or received. It is illegal for a Buyers’ Agent to receive a commission from their client and then from a vendor.

Through industry experience and networks established a good buyers’ agent will have greater experience, access to more data and information that results in benefits passed on to their clients ensuring you make a well informed and educated decision.

As a third party there is no emotion in the deal, a good buyers’ agent will look at facts and market factors for decisions. They are skilled negotiators and save you time by narrowing down your property search.

Buyers Agents can save their clients tens of thousands of dollars, from not buying the wrong property to ensuring they negotiate the lowest achievable price for the right property.

To find a reputable Buyers’ Agent you can look to industry bodies such as or your states Real Estate Institute or sites such as who have affiliate partners in all capital cities.

if you’d like to take a look at the buyers agents we have on our Property Professionals Network please follow this link

Market Wrap March 2016

Sydney – Brisbane – Melbourne – Newcastle

So what is happening in Property on the East Coast of Australia?

We asked 4 buyers agents in the know for their opinion and here is what they have to say…


Despite the media’s best attempts to put fear into the hearts of Sydney buyers the real estate landscape is still quite buoyant.

We are not seeing significant discounting although agents are more actively following up on sales enquiries which is a slight hint that change is coming.

The Easter auction clearance rates were 68.6% so whilst the 80% weeks are behind us that is still a very significant number.

A lot of investor enquiries we receive tends to be for outer lying areas – Central Coast through to Newcastle. A lot of Sydney investors are also buying in Brisbane.

Overseas buyer enquiry is steady with expats securing property in premium pockets. These areas have 3-4% rental yields so these buyers are chasing capital growth and securing their slice of Sydney for the future.

Jo Vadillo
Buyers Agent Sydney
Advocate Services


We tend to focus on investor buying in Brisbane. We have Carol Lawson our local buyers’ agent who is an active investor herself and she knows the market very well. As such we have strong referral networks too with a lot of property presented to us off-market.

Properties are selling the fastest we have seen in 7 years with some selling in a day. We are often buying when there are multiple offers on the table which wasn’t an issue a year ago.

There is a lot of buyers’ agent activity in the outer suburbs of Brisbane. Demand from interstate buyers is driving this.

There are a large number of Sydney and Melbourne investors which is contributing to the prices rising. Brisbane is sitting at about 9pm on the property clock.

Be cautious buying any off-the-plan apartments in the city of Brisbane with expected developments likely to outstrip demand for the next 7 to 10 years according to valuers Herron Todd White. This will impact vacancy rates and prices in the inner city ring.

We always suggest to buyers to look for infrastructure, schools, shops, public transport, parks, entertainment and employment. There is always an opportunity for those that know what to look for.
Greg Vadillo
Buyers Agent Brisbane/Sydney
Advocate Property Services


Melbourne has just passed the pressure test of the year with 1476 properties going up for auction and with a clearance of 75%. The same Saturday last year we had 1170 with a clearance of 76%.

The inner suburbs of Melbourne are still performing extremely well with the eastern premium suburbs still out performing any expectations of a downturn in the market place. Family homes in inner Melbourne will be the stand out performers for capital growth. There is a huge shortage of family homes and that is what will drive the capital growth for 2016.

Period homes in Hawthorn, Kew, Camberwell, Prahran, North Carlton all sold well over the expected reserves.

However you can still buy a house in the inner northern and inner western suburbs for under $1m.  A property in Thornbury struck a record price of $1,945,000 with strong bidding from several bidders.

For you who would like to develop a property it is getting harder and harder. You really need to live in the property and renovate it over a period of time to achieve a good return on investment. House blocks with 600sqm + are being heavily sort after by developers.

In Spotswood which is in the inner west two properties sold to investors in the same street. 10 Strong Street was sold for $560,000 in 2013. On Saturday it sold with plans and permits for $1,117,000. 14 Strong Street was sold for $205,000 in 2006. On Saturday it sold for $977,000 to a developer.

There will not be any real capital growth in apartments and units. However you can be adding value by renovating the older style properties.

Capital growth will not decline within a 12km radius of Melbourne. The reason property grows in value is because land is a scarce commodity. They are not making any more.

Outer suburbs like Frankston, Skye, Rowville, Ferntree Gully Lilydale, Diamond Creek, Epping, Broadmeadows, Deer Park are stagnating with minimal growth.

Karin Mackay
Buyers Agent Melbourne
Australian Property Buyers


Newcastle is Australia’s 7th largest City, with a population of just under 500,000 for Newcastle/Lake Macquarie.  There is a broad range of industry including manufacture, power generation, agriculture, wineries, cattle and equine, tourism, health, medical research and education.  Newcastle boasts the largest working harbour in Australia.

The vibrancy is obvious and it’s a great place to call home with a relaxed lifestyle of harbour side living, fishing and water activities on Lake Macquarie, Australia’s largest Saltwater Lake and world Class beaches.

The Hunter Valley has been awarded Australia’s Best Wine Region in the 2015 Australian Traveller People’s Choice award.

Infrastructure continues to expand:

·        The $1.7 Billion Hunter Expressway to the Hunter Valley has considerably reduced travel time from Newcastle and Sydney.

·        The airport, located 20 minutes from the city, has undergone $15.4 Million in upgrades allowing for extra domestic routes and has been declared “international ready”.

·        The termination of the heavy rail line at Wickham has opened up the harbor foreshore into the older CBD area of Newcastle resulting in high desirability of Inner City living, with 17 major developments DA lodged, approved or under construction.

·        The New $90 Million Court House has just opened and construction is underway for the world first $95 Million University Flexible Learning Centre CBD campus to cater for an additional 4000 students.

·        A walking path from the foreshore extends around the beaches to the recently completed $4.5 Million ANZAC Memorial Walk, a 450m walkway with spectacular 360 degree views of the ocean and city.

With more affordable, lower entry prices compared to Capital Cities, good rental yields and low vacancy rates makes Newcastle an attractive location for property investors.  Well located properties with value adding potential are available in the range of high $300k’s to mid $400k’s. Steady growth without the reactive spikes and dips of other locations, makes the area attractive for long term investment.  Land is in short supply, especially in the inner city suburbs, providing opportunity and support from council to increase density with granny flats, dual occupancy, subdivision and development.  The ease of adding value is also useful for a flipping strategy for those wishing to create extra cash flow.  An example might be to buy a house to renovate, build another dwelling at the rear, subdivide and then either sell both, keep both or sell one/keep one.

The growth in Newcastle is suggested to continue with anticipated to flow on from Sydney. The latest Residential Property Prospects 2015-2018 report for BIS Schrapnel, highlights that Newcastle could see a rise in property prices by 10% over the next 3 years.

Judith Taylor
Buyers Agent/Sellers Advocate
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